Nice weather we’re having, eh? Depends on where you’re living in the world, I suppose. Here, it’s hotter than I can remember for late August. It’s 98 degrees, and the humidity is around 70%, making it almost unbearable. Give me dry heat over wet heat any day, I say.
We have a heat advisory in most places this weekend. Most the mid-west and southern states are under a red flag warning due to the possibility of fires breaking out. This covers many states in the center of the US, but half of my state is red, and the other half is orange on the weather service site. It’s gonna be a damn hot one. Over in the UK, it’s a lovely 70 degrees, a temperature to those of us in the more southern regions of the US feels “just right.” Like the porridge Goldilocks chose. But, that may considered hot to those living in the UK. I have no idea, honestly.
Best to say inside this weekend (unless you have a swimming pool), and what better way to spend the time than by playing games. Here’s what we’re getting into this weekend.
Jim Trinca, Video Producer – Shadow Gambit: The Cursed Crew
Mimimi Games have made a pretty-special niche for themselves as purveyors of the stealth tactics genre, and without going into a history lesson, they’re pretty damn good at it. Shadow Gambit: The Cursed Crew feels like a culmination of everything the studio has learned along the way: the game it was always destined to make. We’ve had a few of these crop up over the years, and they’re always special: BioWare achieved their final form with the Mass Effect trilogy, CDPR with The Witcher 3, Larian with Baldur’s Gate 3… etc. Shadow Gambit is one of those. An excellent genre showcase produced by a well-oiled team running on all cylinders.
For my money, it’s their best game yet: uncoupled from the vague historical realism that their previous titles are attached to, Shadow Gambit throws itself into the storybook realm of the Lost Caribbean, a realm of magic and mysticism that exists on the border between life and death. This pivot to full-on fantasy has unleashed Mimimi’s creativity in every aspect of the game’s design: the characters and their powers are more imaginative than ever, and the semi-open world design lends itself to a grand narrative that evokes tales of ghost ships and the eerie goings on at the Bermuda Triangle, as well as the classic pirate stories we’ve all grown up with. It’s a compelling mix of folklore and expert game design that I can’t tear myself away from despite having many other things to play this month.
Coming out smack-bang in the middle of Baldur’s Gate 3 and Starfield is a brave move, but it’s more than worth your time. And it’s budget-priced too, so if you’re looking for a palate cleanser between Big RPGs, a bit of bush-hiding shiver-me-timbers knife crime could be just the ticket.
Kelsey Raynor, Guides Writer – Baldur’s Gate 3
It’s a bank holiday weekend for some of us. That means three days to do whatever I want! What have I planned to do, though? Nothing. If the weather is nice, I might touch some grass, get a bagel from my favourite cafe, and read a book. It’s the little things, right?
Failing that, though, I’ll be sat firmly at my PC playing more Baldur’s Gate 3 with a bottle of wine beside me. This game has eaten up most of my time, be it writing guides for VG247 or goofing around speaking with the undead and other creatures when I’m not working – I can’t get enough.
I’m in awe of how big the game is and how many new things I keep discovering daily. It’s giving me the same feeling of awe and amazement that Elden Ring did last year, and I suspect that when I finish the game, finally, I’ll be experiencing a big Baldur’s Gate 3 hangover.
Rebecca Jones, Guides Writer – A Space for the Unbound, Sherlock Holmes Chapter One
I’m currently playing indie Life Is Strange-like A Space For The Unbound and hoping to finish it soon, (a) because I need to know where this is going, and (>b) because I’d like to have the capacity to start indie Life Is Strange-like Goodbye Volcano High when it launches next week. I, uh, really like Life Is Strange. And indie games.
Meanwhile, my partner and I are co-piloting Sherlock Holmes Chapter One, where we’ve wandered away from the main story for about the past 15 hours to mop up every side-quest. I never expected to love an open-world detective game this much, and we’re enjoying sightseeing while solving whatever cases we pick up off the street. We’ve got so far into the side stories, in fact, that we seem to have sequence-broken a bit and already completed what’s meant to be the final post-story DLC case. Oops.
Outside of the games I’m focussing on right now, there’s always and forever a reason to drop back into Animal Crossing: New Horizons of a weekend, like the August Bug-Off on Saturday and the fireworks display on Sunday. Ooh, and I’ve just remembered we get a bank holiday on Monday in the UK, so uh… more of the above, but for an extra day!
Stephany Nunneley-Jackson, News Editor – Pokemon Go
Pokemon Go Fest 2023 will open up to folks worldwide this weekend, and it’s the biggest yearly event for the mobile game. Despite the heat, I’ll participate in the festivities this weekend, especially since I already doled out $15 for the ticket. I will NOT be walking around in this blasted damn heat, though. Instead, I’ll ride around a large park full of PokeStops and Gyms with my mother (who also plays) in her car with the air-conditioner blasting.
There will be over 70 Pokemon appearing during the event, and some shinies will debut. RNG hates me, so I will be lucky to get one shiny over the weekend. My mother will probably end up with 20. Mega Diancie also makes its Pokemon Go debut, along with Mega Rayquaza. Can’t wait to fight that one. There will also be four unique habitats that rotate hourly during the event and likely catch quests involving those particular Pokes. Pikachu will have various crowns on its head, and Snorlax will be sporting a cowboy hat. Yeehaw!
That’s us for the weekend. What are your plans? If you’re located in the UK, you have an extra long weekend ahead of you. What’s on the agenda? Tell us below. We’re genuinely curious and a bit nosey.
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